Exporting to the EU market is predicted to be harder next year and growth will reduce to only 10 percent against this year's 20 percent estimation, said Dang Hoang Hai, director of the Ministry of Industry and Trade's European Market Department.

Hai even warned that domestic exporters would have to make every effort just to reach 10 percent growth.
The difficulty is due to the bloc's continuous debt crisis, Hai said, adding that statistics the European Union statistics office Eurostat released last week showed that the 17-member euro zone has fallen back into recession for the first time since the global financial crisis hit hard in 2009. GDP fell by 0.1 percent in the euro area and increased by 0.1 percent across the 27-member EU during the third quarter of 2012, compared with the previous quarter. In the second quarter of 2012, growth rates were 0.2 percent in both zones.

Domestic exporters have also seen signs of difficulties when it comes to shipping to the EU market next year.

Director of the Lien Phat Footwear Co Truong Thi Thuy Lien said that her company's exports to the EU in the last months of this year and early next year are expected to be more difficult as the company has received few contracts for export to the market.

Lien Phat's export to the EU market in the first 10 months of the year went down by roughly 30 percent over the same period last year due to the eurozone's economic slowdown.

According to the General Department of Customs, Vietnam 's exports to the EU in the first 10 months of the year surged more than 20 percent to 16.1 billion USD. However, the growth was mainly from exports of mobile phones, electronic products, machines and equipment, all produced by foreign invested enterprises. Mobile phone shipments to the market doubled from the previous period to reach 4.43 billion USD while computer and electronic products also surged more than 78 percent to 1.11 billion USD.

Meanwhile, key staple Vietnamese exports to the market barely inched up, if they did not decrease. For example, footwear exports increased by only 2.2 percent to 2.08 billion USD while textile and garment shipments declined 5.6 percent to 1.98 billion USD.-VNA